Thursday, May 31, 2007

"A UK government file on the crisis, released from the National Archives, contains a claim that Israel itself was behind the hijacking. An unnamed contact told a British diplomat in Paris that the Israeli Secret Service, the Shin Beit, and the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) collaborated to seize the plane. The flight was seized shortly after it took off from Athens and was flown to Entebbe, where 98 people were held hostage, many of them Israeli citizens....He adds: "My contact said the PFLP had attracted all sorts of wild elements, some of whom had been planted by the Israelis."" Well, this particular hijacking was not undertaken by PFLP but by the splinter group of Wadi` Haddad. And the unit that undertook this operation was almost a splinter group of Wadi` Haddad--just as Carlos was freelancing. So the story here is plausible. And Vasili Nikitich Mitrokhin reported that the KGB had recruited Haddad. A well-known Palestinian leftist leader told me that when he once confronted Haddad about his "operations" back in the mid-1970s, that Haddad showed him papers to authenticate that he did some of those attacks on behalf of the Soviet Union. The story of Wadi` Haddad is an interesting story; I may tell it one day. From his days with George Habash back in the Medical school at AUB. My aunt who knew him used to like him: she felt that he was the most likable of the bunch (Habash, Hawatimah, Ibrahim, etc during the Movement of the Arab Nationalists days). Most likely Saddam killed Wadi` Haddad. Palestinian leaders, politics aside, were more interesting in the 1960s and 1970s: now you have Abu Mazen and Dahlan and Khalid Mish`al. These are not interesting figures, unless you find Anderson Cooper's prose interesting.